AI image passed off as ‘Baphomet burger’ introduced by McDonald’s

By: Anurag Baruah
April 15 2024

Share Article: facebook logo twitter logo linkedin logo
AI image passed off as ‘Baphomet burger’ introduced by McDonald’s

Screenshot of Facebook post falsely claiming that it shows a newly introduced 'Baphomet burger' by McDonald's. (Source: Screenshot/Facebook/Modified by Logically Facts)


The Verdict Fake

McDonald’s has confirmed that it has not introduced any 'Baphomet burger'. The image in question is likely AI-generated.

Claim ID 4c55f5f0

What is the claim?

An image purportedly showing a Baphomet-themed McDonald’s burger, depicted in a black box with black buns alongside The Golden Arches, the iconic symbol of the American multinational fast-food chain, placed next to a Baphomet toy, is circulating widely on social media. Baphomet is a pagan deity in occult traditions and is often associated with Satanism.

The image is being claimed to represent ‘McDonald's newest offering for kids.’ A Facebook user from the U.K. shared the image on April 1, 2024, alleging that it depicted McDonald’s “celebrating human sacrifice to Satan.”

Screenshots of social media posts claiming that the image shows a newly introduced 'Baphomet burger' by McDonald's. (Source: Screenshots/Facebook/X/Modified by Logically Facts)

The claim has also gained traction on X (formerly Twitter) with captions such as “Satanic - they’re coming for the innocent” and “McBaffy Meal...”, garnering thousands of views and hundreds of shares. Archived versions of such posts can be found here and here

What about the image?

Upon investigation, we found that while several social media users insist that the image depicts a newly introduced Baphomet-themed McDonald’s burger, many others have pointed out that the image is fake and likely AI-generated.

Several inconsistencies within the viral image were identified. The McDonald’s logo appeared incomplete on the left side, and the burger pictured on the front differed from the one depicted on the left side of the box. Additionally, the ‘m’ in ‘Baphomet’ appeared uneven, which would not be the case with a genuine McDonald’s product.

Screenshot of the image highlighting inconsistencies. (Source: Screenshot/X/Modified by Logically Facts)

What is the origin of the image?

Further research led to an archived version of a Facebook post from March 27, 2024, in which the viral image first appeared, according to Reuters. The archive, preserved by Reuters, indicates that a Facebook user named ‘LightHouse AI Studios’ posted the image in a group called ‘Cursed AI,’ which boasts over 800,000 members. The group's bio describes it as the “eerie world of AI-generated cursed art.”

Screenshot of the now-deleted post. (Source: Screenshot/Facebook)

The viral image was also analyzed using AI image detection tools. Hive Moderation indicated a 100 percent likelihood that the image is AI-generated, while another tool called 'Is It AI?' returned a result of 77.46 percent, suggesting that the image is highly likely to be AI-generated.

The ‘LightHouse AI Studios’ account had previously posted similar content on multiple occasions in the Cursed AI group. The varying spelling of the word ‘Baphomet’ in these images further supports the notion that they are AI-generated, as AI image generators often struggle with spelling and other finer details.

Screenshot of a post demonstrating varying spellings of the word ‘Baphomet.’ (Source: Screenshot/LightHouse AI Studios/Facebook)

Although LightHouse AI Studios deleted the specific post in question, they shared screenshots of fact-checks from other organizations declaring the ‘Baphomet burger’ image as fake within the Cursed AI group on April 5, 2024.

Screenshot of LightHouse AI Studios sharing screenshots of fact-checks declaring the ‘Baphomet burger’ image as fake. (Source: Screenshot/LightHouse AI Studios/Facebook)

LightHouse AI Studios informed Australian Associated Press FactCheck that they created the image using the Bing AI Image Generator with the prompt “Baphomet happy meal,” noting that they deleted their post to prevent the spread of fake news.

Logically Facts has also contacted LightHouse AI Studios for a comment, and this fact-check will be updated if and when we get a response. 

What has McDonald’s said?

During our research, we found no information on the McDonald’s website regarding the fast-food chain introducing a new ‘Baphomet burger’ or offering a Baphomet toy. No reports or press releases corroborate such information either. Instead, the only new offering across McDonald’s outlets is a limited-edition UNO-themed Happy Meal card game, available until May 7.

Logically Facts contacted McDonald’s for comment, and the fast-food chain confirmed that the image in question was fake and that they are not offering any such ‘Baphomet burger.’ “This is a fake image and not a McDonald’s product,” stated McDonald's media relations department to Logically Facts.

The verdict

McDonald’s has confirmed that the viral image in question is fake, and the multinational fast-food chain has introduced no such product. Research also suggests that it was likely AI-generated. Therefore, we have marked the claim as fake.

Would you like to submit a claim to fact-check or contact our editorial team?

Global Fact-Checks Completed

We rely on information to make meaningful decisions that affect our lives, but the nature of the internet means that misinformation reaches more people faster than ever before